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Thursday, November 10, 2016

Hurry Up, Henry, written by Jennifer Lanthier and illustrated by Isabelle Malenfant. Puffin, Penguin. 2016. $21.99 ages 5 and up

"The only person who
didn't seem to mind how
slowly Henry moved was
Grandma. Grandma never
hurried. Sometimes she took
more time than Henry. If
they needed to be somewhere
at a certain time, Grandma
made sure they got there.
They just left a little earlier."

In this world of hurry-up, some of our children need life to slow down. Henry is one of them. His interest lies in the world around him. He has no need to hurry through it. He likes to take time to relax, look around, bask in the beauty that is there and the joy to be found in  kids on the playground, chalk paintings on the sidewalk, birds in the sky and ants on the ground.

His family is always encouraging him to rush as they live their over-scheduled lives. Simon, his best friend, is the exact opposite of Henry. He is always on the go, facing constant scolding for being in a rush to get things done. Henry likes Simon's visits, but they tire him out. Only Grandma seems to appreciate Henry's need to move more slowly - she is the same. In fact, she might even be slower!

Henry's upcoming birthday has Simon seriously considering the best gift he can give. He enlists Grandma's help. It is PERFECT!

The writing is as calm and lovely as Henry wants his days to be. It's so important for families to find ways to keep everyone in the family in tune with the others, sharing lovely moments of joy. The color and details shown in Ms. Malenfant's lovely artwork perfectly complement the story's tone. She makes evident exactly how Henry is feeling, depending on the action in his days.


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